Seeking Life in the Mountains of Kashmir

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WE live in a place which was created with a touch of magic. A place where everything is just too wonderful for words and if we do not cherish the mesmerizing creations, then who will?

‘The mountains are calling and I must go.’ John Muir 

Nature is my home, my ultimate abode, it surrounds me like mother’s caressing arms and is a source of joy to my heart. The steep roads give me a feeling that I am rising, rising up to God; the tall pines standing as a symbol of this, of having risen like me. Music to my ears is the sound of the chirping birds, each adding melody to the already harmonious silence. These are like flowers adrift in the sky; the hills are definitely alive with the sound of music! Each bird has a different song to deliver and a different hue to color the world with. Each bird is symbolic of the Creator’s greatness, of His infinite bounties and of the beauty that exists in the world.

The tall trees reach up to the sky, making friends with the clouds, standing tall and intimidating. They seem to be whispering to each other, telling tales hundreds of years old, Adding green colors to the picturesque scenes and making the landscape calm and serene as if hundreds of saints are in silent mediation, dressed in green; the color of peace.

Each tree has a story of its own, a tale that could fill a million pages or more, of having seen life through ages; the silent spectator, imbibing in years of wisdom which it shares with the world through its silence. But only those who can interpret the silence of nature are able to gain this immeasurable wisdom. You need to have a heart that feels its way to knowledge, to peace and tranquility.

The roads steepen, the climb gets harder, and into the clouds we drive. Life is in itself a drive, to reach the flourishing youth, the peak and then to take the steep road back to decline; to old age.

When the destination is reached, the heart, eyes, soul and every particle of skin basks in the mesmerizing beauty of the creations of God. The furious river is in the prime of its youth, it gushes over stones and it traverses the valley. Its hurry is evident, a thirst to reach the sea and to dissolve in its vastness. Many mysteries lie ahead of it, there are many planes to cross. Its vigor will vanish in a while which it knows not. Suspense is a part of its life just as our own!

The violent waters rub over stones, carving them into pieces of nature’s sculptures, each stone a master piece in itself. Though the big boulders give an impression of resiliance but they too will weather away into dust one day. But as one sits on a boulder, one gets a feeling that time has ceased to exist and that life has all converged to one point; this point, to the gurgling waters and me!

One beholds in wonder the perfections of all perfect creations. The vast skies that form a canopy overhead are a constant reminder of how miniscule our existence is and how far the power of God goes!  The flowers that surround us seem like tiny gifts that grow out of the earth to add colour to dull and dismal lives!

“Earth laughs in flowers”- Ralph Waldo Emerson

A picnic in the vast green meadows with the sound of the gurgling water nearby, under the lofty trees, with the cool refreshing waft flowing all around, gives us a taste of what heaven would be like. The breeze that flows is better than any air conditioner ever created. It is mildly scented with a fragrance that goes straight to the heart and makes it soar. A heart that senses the light touch of the wind becomes immune to distress for a long, long time!

“Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.” Khalil Gibran 

A date with nature is all you need if life is too hard on you. No matter what place in Kashmir you choose, the company of Family, Friends and Nature are sure going to lift your heart to cloud nine!

“I thank you God for this most amazing day, for the leaping greenly spirits of trees, and for the blue dream of sky and for everything which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes.”  — E. E. Cummings 

Author teaches at SKUAST K. Feedback: [email protected]

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